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Sunday, December 1, 6:30 p.m. (ET)
The Sports Network
By Gregg Xenakes, Associate College Basketball Editor
FACTS & STATS: Site: Honda Center (18,336) -- Anaheim, California. Television: ESPNU. Home Record: GW 3-0, Creighton 3-0. Away Record: GW 1-0, Creighton 1-0. Neutral Record: GW 1-1, Creighton 1-1. Conference Record: GW 0-0, Creighton 0-0. Series Record: First-ever meeting.
GAME NOTES: A battle for third place in the inaugural Wooden Legacy takes place at the Honda Center today, as 20th-ranked Creighton clashes with the George Washington Colonials in the first-ever meeting between the programs.
George Washington, which is celebrating 100 years of basketball, started off the season with five straight wins, one of those coming in the first round of this event against Miami on Thanksgiving in a 71-63 overtime affair. However, on Friday the magic wore off as the team suffered a 76-60 setback to 25th- ranked Marquette at Titan Gym in Fullerton, California before the tourney moved to Anaheim.
As for the Bluejays, a team which has made the move from the Missouri Valley Conference to the more prestigious and revamped Big East Conference, they too rattled off five straight victories out of the chute for 2013-14. But just like the Colonials, Creighton went from a first-round win in this event versus Arizona State (88-60) to an 80-86 setback against San Diego State on Friday night.
The Colonials dug themselves a huge hole in the first half against Marquette as they converted a total of just eight field goals, en route to a 21-point deficit late in the frame and the eventual 16-point setback. For the game, George Washington knocked down only 33.3 percent from the floor and 4-of-19 behind the 3-point line, with Maurice Creek hitting a mere 2-of-10 from long distance as he finished with 14 points. Kethan Savage dropped in 16 points and Joe McDonald 12, while fellow starters Isaiah Armwood (nine points) and Kevin Larsen (zero) came up small for the group.
Creek leads the team in scoring overall at the moment with his 16.3 ppg, his 46.3 percent shooting beyond the arc actually better than his 45.5 percent from the field overall. Armwood (13.8 ppg) and Savage (12.5 ppg) are both shooting well over 50 percent from the floor, the former being credited with 8.3 rpg and 16 blocked shots, both of which pace a program which is beating opponents on the glass by six rebounds per contest.
Creighton appeared to be well on the way to yet another win on Friday night, moving out to a 14-2 lead against the Aztecs just over four minutes into the meeting, but the team ended up trailing by 10 at the break and never fully responded. Doug McDermott, one of the top players in the nation the last several years, accounted for 30 points on 11-of-18 shooting from the floor, including 5-of-8 beyond the arc, but he managed to pull down just four rebounds. Ethan Wragge checked in with 15 points on 5-of-10 behind the 3-point line, followed by Austin Chatman with 11 points in the losing cause.
McDermott, the son of the head coach at Creighton, is again one of the nation's leading scorers with 27.8 ppg, hitting on 48.6 percent from beyond the arc even while capturing a team-best 7.0 rpg. Devin Brooks, who has come off the bench in every game and is averaging only 17.7 minutes per contest, checks in with 11.7 ppg as he shoots almost 60.0 percent from the field, followed by Wragge (11.0 ppg) and Chatman (10.0 ppg) for a team that produces a shade under 90 ppg.
After such a wild swing in the first half against San Diego State on Friday, you can be sure the Bluejays have made the necessary adjustments to prevent anything like that from happening again as they shoot for another Golden State victory.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Creighton 87, George Washington 77
12/01 10:42:00 ET
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